Month: July 2018

Art Events Competition win

I entered an art competition in May, organised by Art Events (Linda Bywaters) with the theme ‘Summer Gardens’. I felt that it needed to have movement and fun in order to appeal to a wide audience. So I produced two paintings featuring birds and water in the sunshine. Loosely based on Erik Lundgren’s University fountains paintings.

I chose the Birdbath to represent my work after asking a few people which they preferred.

I went to the prize giving yesterday given by Linda Bywaters, and found I had won first prize!

competition winner

First Prize

Here are the paintings :



This is the other painting but was not submitted


Many thanks to Linda and Reg of Art Events for organising the weekend and their hard work all for charity.


Plein Air overview

Its been over a year since I first started painting Oils outdoor and I’ve been thinking of reviewing my progress. Painting outdoors is the biggest challenge for me as there are so many factors involved in creating a successful painting. Until now I’ve not really been able to say I have produced a finished outdoor painting. So this is a chance for me to look at a years worth of pictures and see the development.

Some of these were finished at home, so they won’t be all directly comparable but I need to start somewhere.


The images are in rough chronological order and I am able to produce finished paintings in a sitting now. But photographing and reducing the images flatters the paintings. Overall I’m pleased with the progress but need to keep on practicing.

Latest Oils

I’ve not been posting regularly on this blog lately as I have been sending some of my pictures to select Facebook groups instead. So another post today is a bit much but I wanted to show some of my latest oil paintings.

These two paintings are tests in styles. Both are highly detailed but in different ways.

Frost Bite Longbow, shows a group of archers nocking their arrows during a winter competition. The difficulty was achieving likenesses without over-painting or producing caricatures. I liked the way the bows & arrows criss-crossed through the composition. Also there was bright morning winter sun producing strong shadows and highlights.


Frost Bite Longbow

Oak Tree, is testing a different technique on painting trees. I have plans to try using this style on a large format using a picture from the lakes. I have to decide if this is a path I want to follow.




Sketching in the Lakes

We had a wonderful but scorching holiday to the Lake District last week. I’ve not been to Cumbria for about 40 years, so it was a great chance to see the most beautiful landscapes in England and sketch them.

We were only up there for a few days so I didn’t have much time but I did produce the following sketches.

Orchard Cottage

View of Skiddaw from our Cottage

This was an initial sketch, used for planning further paintings in the studio. Its missing the enormity of Skiddaw so I don’t think I will be using it


Bassingthwaite evening lights and darks


Derwent Water

I had 30 mins waiting for the ferry to capture the lake and Cats Bells.


Buttermere & Mellbreak

The walk around Buttermere was magical and I had 30 mins to just outline the lake and Mellbreak hill.

My last sketch was using Oils but I just couldn’t get to grip with the subject and the medium to do justice to the scene.


Skiddaw from the cottage garden